The great ocean is flat to the horizon. Near the shore, ridges of water rise from the surrounding flatness. Each watery ridge rears steeply as it nears the beach, held up by a gentle but persistent wind. Eventually the top hesitates, then drops with a crash. The wave is transformed in an instant into a broth of bubbles. This place between golden sand and blue ocean is filled with these rhythmic crashing sounds and foam-filled waters. Another ridge of water rises, guided by an unseen force.
Your Potential Is Being On A Roll, The Opposite Of A Rut
We need discipline to successfully run our lives. Unfortunately many people associate discipline with harshness and severity. They have never experienced a discipline guided by an unseen force that sets them free.
Whether our discipline is harsh or freeing depends on whether we are in a rut or on a roll. If we are in a rut we will experience the discipline in our lives as severe, stressful and harsh. We will feel imprisoned, unfulfilled and sad. Our lives will be permeated with gnawing discontent. We may seek escape in vigorous hobbies. We need these hobbies to dissipate the anger and frustration we have inside.
This anger and frustration arises because we have not fully accepted the discipline we have in our lives. We do not accept it because we do not love the discipline. We do not love it because the discipline does not come from inner guidance.
If we have a job to perform, or duties to undertake for others and these duties do not sit comfortably in our hearts, then we will rebel against the discipline these duties require. If these duties are unavoidable, like caring for a disabled child or elderly relative then we need to find that place in our hearts where we can love and accept these duties. If our duties can be changed then we need to look at how we can change them.
When we are on a roll our attitude to the discipline we have in our life is totally different. Our discipline is a natural outcome of listening to and following inner guidance. We know our discipline delivers freedom, fulfilment and happiness. We are increasingly embraced by inner peace. Order comes into our life easily and naturally. In the beginning, when we are new to this different kind of discipline, we have to strive to attain it. Later we find an increasing effortlessness as we slip into the natural unfolding of our life.
When I was working for a particular architect's office in my twenties I was in a difficult rut. Uncaring people staffed the office. The bosses made no attempt to vary my work, so I was required to sit at a drawing board all day doing meticulous pen work under severe performance pressure. My opinion was never sought. I did not feel that I counted as a human being. Producing drawings as quickly as possible was my only value. I started hang-gliding at the weekends. I was desperate for a release valve. After a year of suffering this abuse, I plucked up my courage and obtained another job in a more caring architect's office.
Today I am on a roll. My day has a simple discipline. I rise and have some quiet meditation before breakfast. After breakfast I plan the piece I intend to write. Then I head out for my walk along the beach and write when I arrive home. After lunch I do some household duties, and read a favourite spiritual book or listen to some classical music. After my evening meal I usually meet a friend, returning home in the evening for some meditation and a prolonged quiet time that may include some emotional release. I then talk to the most elevated part of myself before going to bed. I do not follow this pattern precisely every day, but it is the backbone of my ordered life. At this point it is the perfect discipline for me.
A discipline suits us if it is guided from within. Discipline that emanates from our calling releases us to enjoy the simple virtues of everyday living. Intuitive discipline nurtures love. This is the discipline we use to expand our potential.
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